I sat down with Dr. Ned Holstein, the founder and chairman of the board of the National Parents Organization at the International Conference on Shared Parenting in Boston. The National Parents Organization has a mission to preserve the bond between parents and children. To that end, at this conference, the world’s most renowned child development experts in the area of post-divorce parenting have gathered to share their research results. How do children fare with and without shared parenting post-divorce?
“There are two big disconnects going on,” Dr. Holstein said. “One is that the general public overwhelmingly believes that shared parenting should be the usual outcome if both parents are fit and there’s been no domestic violence. In fact, this very question went before 700,000 voters in Massachusetts and 86% voted in favor of shared parenting. However, shared parenting is happening in less than 10% of the cases.
“To define the term: shared parenting means that each parent receives at least 35% of the parenting time. This is flexible. There’s no straight-jacket here, but at least there’s a definition.”